Asian Markets Close Mixed, Japan Stuck in Negative Territory
Tokyo's Nikkei 225 Average closed in negative territory while South Korea's KOSPI finished 0.5% higher and Singapore's Straits Times Index ended the day 0.2% lower.
Singapore Airlines kept the broader market afloat, rising more than 2% after it and its parent, Temasek Holdings, both paid US$918 million for a combined 24% stake in China Eastern Airlines. The carrier's Hong Kong-listed H-shares shot up, doubling to a record high at HK$7.50.
However, this was not sufficient to prop-up the Hang Seng Index. It closed down 0.3%.
Japan's Sumitomo Metal Mining climbed 2.7% to an intraday high of 2,390 yen on media reports the nonferrous metals smelter will likely post a group recurring profit of 118.4 billion yen ($1.02 billion) for the April-September first half, up 24% from a year earlier and 27.4 billion yen higher than its original forecast.
Australia's S&P/ASX 200 was flat at 6,249. Financials received a boost by U.S. President's and Federal Chairman's comments.
Construction firm Leighton Holdings jumped 8% to A$48.50 during the session, after it said it will buy a 45% stake in one of the Middle East's biggest engineering firms, Al Habtoor Engineering in a deal worth A$870 million ($707 million).
Meantime, Healthcare firm Symbion Health added 2.9% to A$4.28 after Primary Health Care said it was considering a joint bid for Symbion, challenging an agreed A$2.9 billion ($2.4 billion) offer from rival Healthscope. Healthscope shares were up more than 2% at A$5.60, while Primary Health's stock rose as much as A$11.18.
Taiwan stocks retreated from a three-week high. High Tech Computer, the world's largest smartphone maker, defied market weakness, to climb 4.5% after saying it will hold a news conference with U.S.-based Qualcomm Chief Executive Officer Paul Jacobs on Wednesday. Local media had speculated that the two firms were expected to announce an alliance.